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Jad's 3 hour maximum limit


Jad935
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Each day, I'm to log that I've only played ~3 hours of Valorant (only valorant competitive if I want to play a game; no other game) maximum. exactly how many hours and minutes each day.
3/15/2021 starting 12-6:30AM: 6:00 hours
3/16 11pm-11:59: 0:59hrs
3/17 12am-1:30am, 12pm-1pm, 4:02-6:34: 4:02hrs

3/18 12-3:30pm 3:30hrs (overwatch, competitive only one time with an old friend) Looked at course work and deadlines later

4/09
I have in average reduced my playtime hours way more than what it was before, I however still can not fix my root issue and am finding other ways to get distracted. (Youtube, reddit, discord memes, watching others play games, etc....)
I'm reinstating in hopes to not relapse anymore, and I hope I can commit seriously with a proper template of a daily journal starting today.

4/24
Yeah I uhh am just studying openly now on twitch.tv/jad935

5/01 12:32 AM
Two tests worth 50% total happening at 9am.
Going to commit to a very long stream of studying nonstop all nighter, and a bit of boxing as a relief/break in between on stream twitch.tv/jad935

Edited by Jad935
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Rocky start... Restarting, 3/16 11pm-11:59

3/17 12-1:30am

I need to stop almost completely for my engineering online studies which I'm very behind in and have 3 tests next week for 😞 so I'm limiting myself to only valorant and I've passed my 3 hours marks, and when I'm not playing i've been severely distracted by youtube. I also watched darling in the franxx and I liked it so much I got hit with a little bit of depression being obsessed with that anime. (so far i've done ZERO work, TWO days in a row[lil ditf pun there])

Asking for some help from you guys

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16 hours ago, Master Williams said:

I started that way, to get off of comp games.  I chose to do eso.

what's eso?

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6 hours ago, Jad935 said:

I need to stop almost completely for my engineering online studies which I'm very behind in and have 3 tests next week for 😞 

Just stop playing for a week, it's not a big deal

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I can definitely relate to all of this.
If we are being honest, sad and ugly truth but... we all know that 3 hours is a bit much, especially if it's done through uncontrolled impulsive behavior.

Honestly, if you struggle to not play more than one hour a day, when you have a lot of work to do, you should take your addiction seriously. I also think that gaming is far from the only thing to take care of, the problem of mindlessly browsing the internet may need some attention too.

However, the root cause of your problem is this:
Why are you even doing all this "work" in the first place? Is it because you want to or because you are "forced" by someone else? If you don't want to do it, is there an alternative way to fix it? Just something to think about and you should take this question seriously because it may determine your entire life.

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, Carya said:

I can definitely relate to all of this.
If we are being honest, sad and ugly truth but... we all know that 3 hours is a bit much, especially if it's done through uncontrolled impulsive behavior.

Honestly, if you struggle to not play more than one hour a day, when you have a lot of work to do, you should take your addiction seriously. I also think that gaming is far from the only thing to take care of, the problem of mindlessly browsing the internet may need some attention too.

However, the root cause of your problem is this:
Why are you even doing all this "work" in the first place? Is it because you want to or because you are "forced" by someone else? If you don't want to do it, is there an alternative way to fix it? Just something to think about and you should take this question seriously because it may determine your entire life.

I really do want to help people and I'm very passionate towards my career in biomedical engineering; I just can not control video game addiction and instant gratification. I'm extremely procrastinative and sometimes I just choose to give in; before I'd study a few minutes before a test in high school and still get 80s and 90s, but university isn't as easy... because I don't even attend my classes, everything is supposed to be done on your own. My total playtime of video games since like grade 5 when I got Team Fortress 2 / Garry's mod has been a total of over 30,000 hours I'd say easily

If there is a deeper psychological reason, it was to cope with some of the issues of a strict dad, and the shitty situations of political unrest and war in Lebanon where I grew up, but those issues have chipped away gradually since I was 9 years old/in Grade 4. I have no excuse I just can not get myself motivated to get a grip and finish my work earlier, enjoy life, I used to swim and do MMA and enjoy life; during that time I was more social and it curbed my game playtime, but I obviously can't do those in lockdown right now... I know no one in my classes

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11 hours ago, Jad935 said:

I really do want to help people and I'm very passionate towards my career in biomedical engineering; I just can not control video game addiction and instant gratification. I'm extremely procrastinative and sometimes I just choose to give in; before I'd study a few minutes before a test in high school and still get 80s and 90s, but university isn't as easy... because I don't even attend my classes, everything is supposed to be done on your own. My total playtime of video games since like grade 5 when I got Team Fortress 2 / Garry's mod has been a total of over 30,000 hours I'd say easily

If there is a deeper psychological reason, it was to cope with some of the issues of a strict dad, and the shitty situations of political unrest and war in Lebanon where I grew up, but those issues have chipped away gradually since I was 9 years old/in Grade 4. I have no excuse I just can not get myself motivated to get a grip and finish my work earlier, enjoy life, I used to swim and do MMA and enjoy life; during that time I was more social and it curbed my game playtime, but I obviously can't do those in lockdown right now... I know no one in my classes

OK, I get it. I used to be exactly like you, thinking on the short term, playing video games wherever I could while getting rid of everything getting in the way. But here is the thing, I realized that while they were fun on the short term, but weren't giving much on the long run for me, you seemed to realize it too, so that's really good. I know that you are clever, playing video games seriously is really taxing on your energy and requires your attention, I can confirm this. Add the fact that you could realize what your problems are on your own means that you do pay attention.
You know the saying that most people won't change? Most people can't even realize that they have a problem, in the first place.
So, to go straight to the point, what I would suggest you is to stop paying attention to the bad habits of other people, like really it's not because they are thousands to do it that they are right. The majority can often be wrong when it comes to some things.
You know that investing more in something will pay off sooner or later? It is the same thing in life.
What I would suggest to you is to start paying attention to your life right now. Pay attention to what you are doing and what you will have to do, pay attention to the clock. Don't delay things, even for a few seconds, do them right now. In fact, the more you wait, the harder it will become to do said things. Stop doing things in autopilot, be conscious about what you do.
Life is sometimes hard, but it's in these hard that we can differentiate the serious and clever people from the people living mindlessly in the matrix.
Just do it. Put your games on the side for a few days, focus on what you have to do, ideally find healthier things to do in your free time, to not have to stare at an empty ceiling and report your findings here.

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1 hour ago, Carya said:

OK, I get it. I used to be exactly like you, thinking on the short term, playing video games wherever I could while getting rid of everything getting in the way. But here is the thing, I realized that while they were fun on the short term, but weren't giving much on the long run for me, you seemed to realize it too, so that's really good. I know that you are clever, playing video games seriously is really taxing on your energy and requires your attention, I can confirm this. Add the fact that you could realize what your problems are on your own means that you do pay attention.
You know the saying that most people won't change? Most people can't even realize that they have a problem, in the first place.
So, to go straight to the point, what I would suggest you is to stop paying attention to the bad habits of other people, like really it's not because they are thousands to do it that they are right. The majority can often be wrong when it comes to some things.
You know that investing more in something will pay off sooner or later? It is the same thing in life.
What I would suggest to you is to start paying attention to your life right now. Pay attention to what you are doing and what you will have to do, pay attention to the clock. Don't delay things, even for a few seconds, do them right now. In fact, the more you wait, the harder it will become to do said things. Stop doing things in autopilot, be conscious about what you do.
Life is sometimes hard, but it's in these hard that we can differentiate the serious and clever people from the people living mindlessly in the matrix.
Just do it. Put your games on the side for a few days, focus on what you have to do, ideally find healthier things to do in your free time, to not have to stare at an empty ceiling and report your findings here.

I've connected with a classmate and got some help/old tests from them. That in itself has also helped a lot; but what has helped the most is exactly what you said. I'm not playing as much anymore; but the reality is I really, really like video games >.< I can't shake off the adrenaline/rush of top fragging and winning a competitive strategic match in Valorant, etc... So far I haven't played anything else, and even then I'm hitting slightly over 3 hours at the beginning and now I'm naturally under 3 hours. But now, I slept early yesterday and chose to wake up early today like a regular person should. I'm energized, worked out very slightly in the morning, I'm refreshed and clean and ready for this day. I realized something as simple as changing my bed/pillow sheets and making my bed has given me a tiny sense of accomplishment that's satisfied me more than binging hours of valorant and not feeling accomplished. It's crazy how something that's somewhat a tiny bit productive and useful in real life can compare to hours of a video game. I can't wait to report back to my journal and log what I've done today 😄 Thank you Carya, you're an awesome person for helping me 🙂 I don't know if I would've been strong enough to take the first step if people didn't help respond to be honest

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On 3/18/2021 at 2:21 PM, Jad935 said:

I've connected with a classmate and got some help/old tests from them. That in itself has also helped a lot; but what has helped the most is exactly what you said. I'm not playing as much anymore; but the reality is I really, really like video games >.< I can't shake off the adrenaline/rush of top fragging and winning a competitive strategic match in Valorant, etc... So far I haven't played anything else, and even then I'm hitting slightly over 3 hours at the beginning and now I'm naturally under 3 hours. But now, I slept early yesterday and chose to wake up early today like a regular person should. I'm energized, worked out very slightly in the morning, I'm refreshed and clean and ready for this day. I realized something as simple as changing my bed/pillow sheets and making my bed has given me a tiny sense of accomplishment that's satisfied me more than binging hours of valorant and not feeling accomplished. It's crazy how something that's somewhat a tiny bit productive and useful in real life can compare to hours of a video game. I can't wait to report back to my journal and log what I've done today 😄 Thank you Carya, you're an awesome person for helping me 🙂 I don't know if I would've been strong enough to take the first step if people didn't help respond to be honest

Nice.
I am glad to know that you found some thing that work for you, I was aware of the bed trick, I did it often subconsciously and it helped a bit.
Yeah, I can't wait to see what you have done and log your progress 🙂 

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Okay, my only fun from now on will be reading my course materials, occasionally if i'm extremely bored 20 mins max allotted (will time it exactly) of mobile games. watching my lecture materials, and exercise.

I've honestly just fucked up non-stop back to back, haven't committed to the journal, etc... I only have 17 days left in my semester and if I don't try my hardest now, i'm fucked.
Hoping for maximum productivity outcome.

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Wish you luck on limiting your game time and getting the most out of studying. Those can be hard to balance. 
 

Best 

Jason

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Why is it so hard??? Can anyone share what helped them / the science about what helps best to get off games and into the mentality to work harder/motivate to study? Thanks

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Hey  @Jad935,

To make it short and good to memorize you can think of a big elephant which is ridden by a short Indian guy with a turban (yeah its racist but its also memorable!)

The elephant  is a big beast and way stronger than the rider. It is driven by hunger, thirst and reproduction interests which ensure that it (or at least its genes) survive.

The short Indian guy able to give him commands where to go, but he can only do so by conditioning the elephant first, by coupling the elephants needs with his commands. This way the elephant learns (slowly) what it should do.

The elephant represents our reptile brain which developed in the million of years before we got a conscious. The movements  of the elephant are your behaviors. The commands of the rider (or a nice elephant lady on the wayside) are triggers of that movements/behaviors. Our conscience is the short Indian rider. He seems to be in command, but in reality only the elephant decides where they go. But the rider can look forward, find food and other desirable stuff for the elephant, and so the elephant learned that it actually benefits to follow the commands. But to learn this, it needs a lot of repetition to connect a command (trigger) followed by a small move in the right direction (small new behavior) to a benefit (bananas from the rider) which fulfills a need (hunger) until it goes automatically in that direction if the rider calls out the command.

We in this forum trained our elephants that we fulfill various needs (social approval, excitement, challenge, new things, social status) by playing games as much as we can. Because it works. But it works only in a shallow short-term way. Our rider knows that to sustain us in the future we need to study/exercise/face hard feelings. But our elephant doesn't know this. If we then call a new command ("I will study this time even if it feels shitty") our elephant will just do what it's done in the past and easily override our new command.

Conclusion: Success isn't about motivation (we are all motivated to have great things). It is about training your inner elephant by building new habits. To do this, you have to get many repetitions of the new behavior. This is hard if you want to change the way of doing to radically or if triggers are around you in eyesight.

Use the few capabilities your rider has:

  • Plan by setting a destination you want to land on (Goal setting).
  • Commit to your plan (don't change goals to easily).
  • Use the herd to reach your goal (social pressure by committing publicly).
  • Choose a way without distracting elephant ladies on your wayside (delete that steam account. Block that gaming site).
  • Feed the elephant if he moves in the correct direction (put that x on your calendar, buy that nice music instrument/journal/electric plaything you wanted after a month of abstinence).
  • Reflect on the commands regular and train your elephant in useful new commands (create new habits).
  • Be kind to the elephant and the rider. They are both part of you. And you need both to reach your goals.
     

Regards
Mario

To get more input on behavior change and habits I would recommend as a first more scientific resource the book "Atomic Habits". The elephant rider analogy is from another book, but I couldn't remember its name, and it was more self-helpy and less science based 🙂

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2 hours ago, Jad935 said:

Why is it so hard??? Can anyone share what helped them / the science about what helps best to get off games and into the mentality to work harder/motivate to study? Thanks

I don't know if this is possible, due to covid, but something that might help is to seek out studying places away from your home. It is very difficult to motivate yourself when your studying and relaxing/gaming areas get mixed up. Is there a public library nearby where you can study? Or perhaps some friend is also having difficulty studying and you can study together (or separately) at their place. Maybe your university has some initiatives for students having trouble studying? Try to figure out some way to separate your studying life from your "normal" life. And don't forget to seek advice! "You said that everything is supposed to be done on you own" while studying. It is true that it is your own responsibility, but that doesn't mean that you have to do it on your own. Most universities have study advisers or study Councillors who are happy to help you if your struggling with issues such as procrastination and motivation (or other issues). Seeking out their help doesn't mean that you're not doing it on your own, it means you're taking responsibility to figure out what you need to finish your studies. And don't forget that the issues you are dealing with are extremely common. Most students struggle with some form of procrastination, studying is boring compared to activities such as gaming. That's why people often meet up with others to study in libraries, it helps them to go study even if them don't want to. If you agree with friends to study at 3pm at the library, you suddenly have a responsibility to your friends to show up and study.

Another thing that might help is to plan ahead. Start each week planning ahead when and how long you're going to study. And make a habit out of it. For example; every Monday morning I will go to the library at 8am (or 9am or whatever). Pack your bag the day before and just go. 

To stop gaming is very difficult. The advantages of stopping come in the long term. As I understand it, your brain needs time to rewire itself so that other activities become more fun again. I'd recommend reading this article on reddit about it: https://www.reddit.com/r/StopGaming/comments/mk224e/explanation_of_addiction_and_how_to_overcome_it/

Lastly, be honest with yourself, but also be patient and kind to yourself. It takes time to overturn habits. Don't look at mistakes as "failures", but as motivators to change next time. Re-evaluate how it makes you feel and try again.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Posted (edited)

Thank you all for the kind words and encouragement 🙂

I have uninstalled every video game except for VR Boxing, which is 99% exercise, and
I kept Valorant for occasions where I may play with friends, as a nice break and mind/reflex motor skills training/team building game, up to maximum 1 deathmatch warmup and 1 competitive game a day (Edit: This is like up to approximately ~1 hour playtime max, sometimes a match can last 15+minutes if it's a stomp)

I'm now actually streaming myself studying on twitch.tv/jad935 and I ask people to come and ask me questions on the content I'm learning openly.
It's been a lot better than what I was doing before so far.

 

Edited by Jad935
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Posted (edited)
On 3/18/2021 at 7:03 AM, Carya said:

OK, I get it. I used to be exactly like you, thinking on the short term, playing video games wherever I could while getting rid of everything getting in the way. But here is the thing, I realized that while they were fun on the short term, but weren't giving much on the long run for me, you seemed to realize it too, so that's really good. I know that you are clever, playing video games seriously is really taxing on your energy and requires your attention, I can confirm this. Add the fact that you could realize what your problems are on your own means that you do pay attention.
You know the saying that most people won't change? Most people can't even realize that they have a problem, in the first place.
So, to go straight to the point, what I would suggest you is to stop paying attention to the bad habits of other people, like really it's not because they are thousands to do it that they are right. The majority can often be wrong when it comes to some things.
You know that investing more in something will pay off sooner or later? It is the same thing in life.
What I would suggest to you is to start paying attention to your life right now. Pay attention to what you are doing and what you will have to do, pay attention to the clock. Don't delay things, even for a few seconds, do them right now. In fact, the more you wait, the harder it will become to do said things. Stop doing things in autopilot, be conscious about what you do.
Life is sometimes hard, but it's in these hard that we can differentiate the serious and clever people from the people living mindlessly in the matrix.
Just do it. Put your games on the side for a few days, focus on what you have to do, ideally find healthier things to do in your free time, to not have to stare at an empty ceiling and report your findings here.

Not gonna lie I think the journal reporting and thing is not that useful. Just sacrifice time and focus on the right now is the true effective method, and not being on "auto pilot" like you said.

Still, I am the type that needs a replacement addiction to get rid of another addiction.
Thankfully I'm trying to build myself more academically, physically, socially, and spiritually as I'm reducing my hours to (hopefully a halt to 0) almost none.
edit: one thing that sucks is I absolutely love MMA and swimming, and in Toronto both of those are locked down completely. I also have a tiny vicious cycle of telling myself "I don't have time to do those/go outside" so I stay in but instead and waste time on much more useless things like sometimes video games or watching things/browsing purposeless things.

Edited by Jad935
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